Bollywood Celebrity Interview: Rakesh Roshan ...

By Subhash K. Jha, Indo-Asian News Service

imageMumbai, July 4 (IANS) Filmmaker Rakesh Roshan dismisses criticism that his "Krrish" has failed to meet the standards of "Koi...Mil Gaya" and says it is "prevalent practice" to always make the last film seem better than the new product.

"Comparing 'Krrish' with 'Koi... Mil Gaya' is like comparing Raj Kapoor's 'Sangam' with 'Awaara'. Such comparisons serve no purpose and people who make them know nothing about the box office. To make a niche film is relatively easy," Roshan told IANS.

He says that "Krrish", starring son Hrithik Roshan, has already surpassed its original "Koi...Mil Gaya" in profits.

"People expect me to surpass my previous collections and 'Krrish' has done so in the first three days. What 'Koi... Mil Gaya' had done in its entire run, "Krrish" has done in the first week."

Excerpts:

Q: It is being said that "Krrish" doesn't touch people's hearts like "Koi...Mil Gaya".

A: That's a prevalent practice here to always make what comes in the past seem better than the new product. But comparing "Krrish" with "Koi... Mil Gaya" is like comparing Raj Kapoor's "Sangam" with "Awara". Those who are comparing my two films are just trying to be smart.

The box office collections tell another story. The way things look, "Krrish" is going to be the biggest blockbuster made in this country. We'll cross more than Rs.600 million in seven days. Everything in "Krrish" is different. Such comparisons serve no purpose and people who make them know nothing about the box office. To make a niche film is relatively easy.

Sanjay (Leela) Bhansali's "Black" was a fantastic film. And the business it did was surprising. But I make fully commercial films. People expect me to surpass my previous collections. "Krrish" has done so in the first three days. What "Koi... Mil Gaya" had done in its entire run, "Krrish" has done in the first week.

A friend called to say his nephew refused to budge from the seat after the show. He wanted to go on watching it in the next show. Yes, "Krrish" does belong to the same genre as "Superman" or "King Kong". It had to go by the genre.

In every film of that genre, the heroine wonders about the super-hero's identity. Even in "Shahenshah", Meenakshi Sheshadri went through the same dilemma.

Q: Priyanka Chopra is being criticised for her minimised impact?

A: Even Preity Zinta had a substantial role in "Koi...Mil Gaya". Hrithik's role completely overshadowed her, and now Priyanka. That's because he has the author-backed role and he is a very fine actor. He put his whole and soul in both films.

But I want to ask one thing - how is the film working so well if Priyanka's role isn't working? If the love story didn't work, the film wouldn't have worked. Why are people scratching the surface of "Krrish" to prove it has flaws?

Q: Another criticism is that the film is too long and comic portions in the first-half are redundant.

A: If this film was called "Koi...Tumsa Nahin" and not "Krrish", no one would've minded the length. I could have easily shown the film to be techno-savvy like the second half. If I have old-fashioned comedy in the first half, it is because I know people enjoy it in the interiors.

I made the audience fall in love with Krishna first so they could adore "Krrish" in the second half. "Krrish" is nothing without Krishna. As for the comedy being old-fashioned, the film is doing so well in places like Patna because it's old-fashioned. I have to make sure "Krrish" runs in Tamil Nadu and the US. It's a rage in all the smaller stations.

Q: What about the songs by Rajesh Roshan?

A: Those who say the songs aren't up to the mark should see how the music sales have picked up after the release. After seeing the songs in the film people love them.

Q: Why so many product endorsements?

A: Today, even in Hollywood, films are packed with endorsements. Every entertainment product is now propped by products. What's the harm in showing Rekha washing her clothes in a particular detergent, or Hrithik drinking a beverage? And don't people have Lay's chips in movie theatres. So why not in my film?